Africa Edition

Africa Analysis
African languages – Lifting the mask of invisibility
Ngugi wa Thiong'o
There is a need to intensify resistance to the metaphysical empire of language, literature and scholarship and make African languages and what is produced in them more visible. Every African university should become an advocate of African languages.
Africa News
Science policy foiled by institutional capacity – Report
Wagdy Sawahel
Despite the fact that two-thirds of African countries have policies and strategies in place for science, technology and innovation, the capacity of the continent’s higher education institutions and associated research centres to implement them remains very low.
World Bank PhD skills programme seeks greater buy-in
Christabel Ligami
Only five African countries have made their pledges and committed to the World Bank's Partnership for Skills in Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology programme since its launch three years ago.

Ongoing lecturer strike keeps students in limbo
Gilbert Nakweya
Teaching and learning is yet to resume at public universities across the country as the unions representing the teaching staff had not, by late last week, reached an agreement with the government over salaries, keeping the studies of thousands of students in 33 institutions on hold.
US$2bn bond to plug higher education facilities deficit
Tonderayi Mukeredzi
Government last week Wednesday contracted CBZ Holdings, one of the country’s biggest financial institutions, to raise US$2 billion through bonds to fund infrastructure facilities at the country’s institutions of higher learning.
Quality assurance workshops target university teaching
Francis Kokutse
As pressure mounts on African universities to produce employable graduates, the quality of university teaching has been identified by the Association of African Universities as a key factor in improving outcomes.
Concerns raised over spate of violence at universities
Laeed Zaghlami
Algerian universities, usually enclaves of peace and perceived as bastions of reason and enlightenment, have in the past few weeks been the site of several acts of violence, raising concerns over the spread of physical violence from other sectors of society.
World Blog
Unfair teacher feedback means demotivated students
Nita Temmerman
Student feedback should be about helping students progress in their learning, not penalising them for originality. Feedback that is unfair and not linked to stated assessment criteria works against students achieving their potential.
Africa Briefs
Scientific index to ‘decolonise’ research in Africa
An African index of scientific references and publications is being planned on the initiative of the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa.
Universities urged to adopt ‘hard work' culture
Vice-president Manuel Domingos Vicente has called for Angola’s higher education institutions to adopt a culture of hard work to encourage growth, innovation, modernisation and competitiveness.
Science Scene
Dental plaque DNA shows Neanderthals used ‘aspirin’
Ancient DNA found in the dental plaque of Neanderthals – our nearest extinct relatives – has provided remarkable new insights into their behaviour, diet and evolutionary history, including their use of plant-based medicines to treat pain and illness, researchers from the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom and the University of Adelaide in Australia have discovered.
World Round-up
Plan to set up women’s universities in each district
Higher education in Bihar ‘on verge of collapse’
Hindustan Times
Minister calls for ‘re-packaging’ of ideology classes
South China Morning Post
Arab students now have greater say in integration plan
Universities may soon offer full degrees overseas
The PIE News
Education department moves to prosecute essay mills
The Irish Times
Nearly 15,000 Syrians studying in Turkish universities
Hurriyet Daily News
Oxford University leaders call for EU citizen guarantees
Business Insider
Digital disruption lowers cost of pricey masters degrees
Financial Review
MPs urge stronger business-universities tie-ups
The Telegraph
Universities brace for university commissioner changes
Taiwan university graduate suspected of espionage
Lecturers to learn about disruptive technology from CEOs
The Star/Asia News Network
University entry change unlikely despite concerns
Insourcing of workers at universities – Uneven progress
Universities urged to develop rail infrastructure courses
This Day
New university thesis topics reflect local contributions
Nobel Prize winner hopes to study at Oxford University
Africa Features
Addressing language barriers is key to student success
Munyaradzi Makoni
By focusing on the quality of their note-taking in and out of class, researchers from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, have established that poor English language competence is hindering the academic performance of a significant number of undergraduate students for whom the language is not their mother tongue.
Call to ensure more women access higher education
Ramadhan Rajab
The president of the Somali National Commission for UNESCO and former Somalia education minister has called on her country’s fledgling national government and growing tertiary education sector to redouble its efforts to boost the presence of women in Somali higher education.
Lifelong learning challenged by perceptions of inferiority
Wagdy Sawahel
The 57 member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, 27 of which are in Africa, have adopted a declaration for promoting lifelong learning in universities, but implementation is still challenged by attitudes which position lifelong learning as the 'poor cousin' in universities.
Diversifying income streams in African universities
Munyaradzi Makoni
In order to be sustainable, successful tertiary institutions around the world have found ways to diversify their income streams so as to reduce dependence on public funds which are often tied to economic and political factors. How can this work in Africa?
Africa Analysis
Universities, adrift for years, must now get a grip
Nickanor Amwata
Properly and thoroughly implementing the recommendations arising out of the recent universities audit by the Commission for University Education presents an opportunity to restore the reputation of the country's university system.
Global News
Universities in US and Europe denounce new travel ban
Brendan O'Malley
Universities in the United States and Europe have spoken out against President Donald Trump’s new travel ban issued on 6 March, voicing alarm at the impact it will have on international students but also on the US’s ability to attract the best talent.
QS subject rankings dominated by Harvard and MIT
Affirmative action students equal or outperform peers
María Elena Hurtado
New guidance on university tie-ups with mainland China
Mimi Leung and Yojana Sharma
International students worth £25 billion to UK economy
Universities join global HE clearinghouse for refugees
Brendan O'Malley
Doubling of PhDs has not affected quality – Analysis
Jan Petter Myklebust
In search of a new form of university governance
Jan Petter Myklebust
Universal basic income – Time for scholarly research?
Paul Basken, The Chronicle of Higher Education
Global Commentary
Standing up for the facts in an era of post-truths
Barney Glover
Universities have a vital role to play in standing up for evidence, dealing with disruption and above all asking questions about the complex problems we face today and in the future – and to never rest with the answers.
The case for learning through research
Paul Benneworth, Franziska Eckardt and Matt Bucholski
Ongoing research shows that students – and their universities – can gain from being allowed to undertake research. Through research, students develop many of the kinds of skills that can be used to contribute to innovation or solving social challenges.
Linguistic battle sparks revolt against globalisation
Rosemary Salomone
The Italian Constitutional Court’s recent nuanced decision on teaching university courses in English has provoked a popular response in defence of Italian. Could the decision give momentum to a backlash against English and globalisation?
Education equity crisis in California’s universities
Lisa Unangst
The enrolment crisis in California caused by growing demand, neoliberal policies and budget constraints, is adversely affecting students of colour and those from lower socio-economic groups. California’s policy-makers should follow Clark Kerr’s example and lead the drive for equitable access.
Global Features
Researchers grapple with 40% cut in science funding
Kafil Yamin
Despite an election pledge to double funding, the government has cut the research budget for state universities by 40%, leaving researchers in poor parts of the country grappling with the challenge of how to produce meaningful research with little money – for some pooling resources between universities is the answer.